Stylish exhibitions to visit this summer
From beach breaks to scenic day hikes, if you find yourself in the hustle and bustle of the city why not take in some of these stylish exhibits on display across the country.
From couture-collecting farmers and the ‘Big Eighties Energy’, to fashion revolutionaries and Swedish mystics commanded by the great beyond, treat yourself to a bit of culture this summer and maybe learn something new.
Mary Quant: Fashion Revolutionary, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki
Subversive, inventive and revolutionary, legendary fashion designer Mary Quant helped define the style of the “swinging sixties”. Credited with inventing some of the most iconic looks of the decade – namely the mini skirt, hot pants and thin ribbed sweater (said to have been inspired by trying on a children’s sweater) – Quant’s irreverent yet highly wearable designs were quickly embraced by liberated women of the time, encouraging a new era of feminism.
A retail pioneer, Quant’s first store, ‘Bazaar’ on London’s famous King’s Road, offered a truly unique shopping experience. Extended opening hours, loud music and free drinks drew crowds of young women eager for something different from the formal settings and mature style of the couturiers and mainstream stores. Quant’s business savvy led her to transform her brand into a wholesale business, making designer fashion accessible to working women around the world and cementing her position as the ultimate tastemaker of her time.
Here from the famous V&A museum in London, Mary Quant: fashion revolutionary is open at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki this summer. The exhibition brings together more than 120 garments as well as accessories, cosmetics, sketches and photographs, to offer an in-depth look at the pioneering fashion icon who toppled the dominance of luxury couture by harnessing the spirit youth of the 60s and embracing new techniques of mass production, thus empowering the modern woman.
DETAILS: December 10 to March 13, 2022, adult admission $24.50. For more information, click here.
* Images of the cosmos to accompany the Hilma af Klint exhibition
* Ngāti chief Whātua Ōrākei appointed deputy director of Auckland Art Gallery
* The mayor of Wellington is concerned about the restructuring of the City Gallery
* Hilma af Klint will be presented in New Zealand for the first time
Eden Hore: Haute couture/High Country, The Dowse
Eden Hore was an upland farmer from the small town of Naseby in central Otago. Admired for his agricultural prowess, Hore was also known for his eclectic taste and entrepreneurial spirit. He was the first to import and breed American miniature horses, and also owned a menagerie of exotic animals, including bison, peacocks, and Himalayan Tahr. And while you’d expect a farmer to be interested in animals, Hore had another great passion: dropping beautiful fashion. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s he amassed an enviable collection of avant-garde haute couture clothing by leading local designers of the time, including Vinka Lucas, who also produced clothing for Saudi royalty, and prolific bridal wear designer Kevin Berkahn. Hore’s vintage tailoring collection is considered one of Australasia’s largest and is valued at over $80,000.
Eden Hore: Haute Couture/High Country, presented at The Dowse this summer, brings together some of the most glamorous dresses from the Hore collection and positions them against stunning landscapes in central Otago, recreating the connection between farmer and fashion. Captured by renowned New Zealand photographer Derek Henderson, the series of photographs celebrates the best our country has to offer: breathtaking landscapes, passionate individuals and extraordinary creative talents. The exhibition is also part of the 2022 New Zealand Arts Festival.
DETAILS: from December 4 to March 20, 2022, free admission. For more information, click here.
Face Time: Portraits from the 1980s, New Zealand Portrait Gallery Te Pukenga Whakaata
Face Time: Portraits from the 1980s is all about that ‘Big Eighties Energy’, as curator Milly Mitchell-Anyon puts it. Think big hair and bold fashion wrapped up in a coming-of-age tale.
The 1980s were a time of immense upheaval for Aotearoa as the nation underwent seismic shifts that forever changed its social, political and economic landscape. Muldoon, the 1981 Springbok Tour protests, Rogernomics and gay rights reform are just a few of the major events that defined and redefined the decade.
face time talks about these pivotal moments in our country’s history and celebrates the energy, color and unapologetic grimace synonymous with the 80s.
The exhibition showcases works in a wide range of mediums, including photography, ceramics, books, t-shirts, sculpture and painting, from major public and private art collections, with artists represented such as Mary McIntyre, Pat Hanly, Deborah Bustin, Jeffery Harris, Trevor Moffitt, Tony Fomison, Michael Illingworth and Fiona Clark.
DETAILS: November 25 to February 13, 2022, free admission. For more information, click here.
Hilma af Klint: The Secret Paintings, City Gallery Wellington Te Whare Toi
This summer, at the City Gallery Wellington, an exhibition of monumental works by the Swedish artist-mystic Hilma af Klint. Working at the turn of the 20th century, af Klint developed an entirely new artistic style, the rediscovery of which radically challenges the male-centric chronologies of modern art history. Considered one of the first examples of abstract art, his works, created as early as 1906, predate those of the “fathers of modernism”, Kasimir Malevich, Vassily Kandinsky and Piet Mondrian.
A member of the avant-garde mystical movement, af Klint imbued his huge, colorful paintings with mysticism. The large abstract forms that dominate his canvases are inspired by Hermetic traditions and drawn from occult symbology. Known for holding seances at her home, af Klint claimed that “the images were painted directly through me, without preliminary drawings and with great power. I had no idea what the pictures would represent.
Believing that the world is not yet ready to see his paintings, af Klint left his family explicit instructions that his paintings be kept under lock and key for two decades after his death in 1944. Since being released from storage, the paintings d’af Klint have taken the art (and fashion) world by storm with exhibitions of his works breaking attendance records.
DETAILS: December 4 to March 27, 2022, adult admission $22.50. For more information, click here.
Moana Currents: Dress Aotearoa Now, MTG Hawke’s Bay Tai Ahuriri
Presented by the New Zealand Fashion Museum and curated by Doris de Pont and Dan Ahwa, Moana Currents: Dress Aotearoa Now examines how our history of migration and cultural exchange has shaped the way we dress today. The exhibition, which has toured other centers across the country, explores the vā across Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa (the Pacific Ocean) and how these different threads were woven together to create a distinctive identity unique to Aotearoa.
Pont and Ahwa selected pieces from emerging and established local designers working in fashion, jewelry and tattoo, to explore a range of themes such as technology, heritage craft techniques, changing cultural motifs and ongoing dialogue. between packaging and structured clothing. The exhibition includes pieces by Trelise Cooper, Emilia Wickstead, Bill Urale aka King Kapisi, Neil Adcock, Kereama Taepa and Zelda Murray.
DETAILS: November 27 to March 6, 2022. For more information, click here.